Talking pictures : how they are made and how to appreciate them (1937)

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Talking Pictures Those who consider the great Lon Chaney the "greatest artist of make-up who ever lived" wonder what heights Chaney might have attained had he pos- sessed the advantage of these new discoveries. Chaney was ahead of his time in make-up and had many personal secrets which died with him. But, clever as he was, had he known the newer methods now available he could have avoided much of the discomfort he felt when he rehearsed and acted the role of Quasimodo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Ability to add or subtract age is the mark of the relative genius of a make-up artist. Age first attacks the neck. Shadows are painted in with reds or browns, and cords are intensified and made stringy by the same color- ation. Scores of grayish-blue or black lines, no larger than a thin thread, are placed at the eyes and the mouth. The inside of the eyelids are reddened, and shadows, referred to as "balloon tires," are outlined under the eyes. The illusion of fat, or the lack of it, is easily established by clever use of red. Age is removed by a reversal of the means described to add it. Male players with strong lines of character in their faces frequently avoid make-up except where it is re- quired for radical changes of appearance. Wallace Beery and Ronald Colman, as examples, find that the distinc- tive facial configurations nature gave them not only fit without make-up into many characterizations, but have become personal trade-marks of great monetary value. Young leading men and women, whose youth is a major asset, usually wear a clay-yellow make-up, which gives them a clear, white complexion on the screen. [150]